Why is this a natural therapies issue? Depending on which research you look at the efficacy of common medical treatments for various conditions ranges from just 10-20%! The remainder fell into various categories from probably efficacious to outright dangerous. If you want to use Evidence Based Medicine (which has a specific meaning and not necessarily meaning what common sense suggests it does) as the rule to follow then every treatment your GP, specialist, surgeon, etc gives should be weighed and measured against the EBM model. If it is found to fall outside that small 10-20% of treatments that are efficacious then the taxpayer (via Medicare and/or private health rebates) should not pay. This way the government will save some very serious money. Much more than this 1% of total private health benefits paid as mentioned in the article.
Preventative health care (a strong focus of most natural health modalities) also saves money as compared to the lumbering damage control medical system we are currently financing. The old adage 'an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure' is quite true. But that is not even being investigated.
Further to this, there are many questions to be answered regarding the EBM model including its suitability as the sole governing principle, and how it is practised
(such as what outcomes are chosen as endpoint markers, what is the predictive validity regarding the individual, how do we clean up research and publication bias, teaching clinicians how to read and critically assess research articles for design quality and outcome relevance, etc etc). Many natural therapies will never be measurable by the so called 'gold standard' double blind randomised placebo controlled trial. For example, you can't do a placebo massage.This does not mean they don't work, it means different investigative techniques need to be used. Indeed the DBRPCT has its own limitations as do all research trial designs.
This is a much bigger issue than the question of the efficacy of the extras.